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Are you prepared for the 4th of July weekend?

4th weekend DUI AttorneyFourth of July DUI Arrest - Fight Your Charges
   The fourth of July holiday is a time when many families and friends get together to celebrate. But nice weather, a party atmosphere and alcohol can add up to trouble. On this holiday weekend, state and local police are often on heightened alert for potential drunk driving and underage drinking.
   If you were pulled over and arrested for drinking and driving, you have legal rights. An arrest does not guarantee a conviction - talk to an attorney today about your next steps. Arrange a free, no-obligation consultation and learn your rights by filling out the form below now.

Take Precautions
   If you have plans to spend this holiday drinking with friends or family it's important to understand how alcohol can affect your judgment as a driver. Anyone with blood alcohol content measured at .08 or above is considered intoxicated in every state. You may reach this limit faster than you think, and even one drink could affect your ability to safely drive and react.

Law Enforcement is watching on the 4th
   During popular holidays such as July 4th, where there could be a higher number of inebriated drivers on the roads, the police are often paying close attention. This reality can make a driver more vulnerable to being stopped for routine violations such as an expired registration. So in addition to not driving while intoxicated, making sure your car registration is current could prevent an unnecessary detention from a police officer. Plus, many states increase the number of roadside DUI checkpoints during holidays

Breaking Minor Traffic Laws can have Big Consequences
   Besides any car registration issues, officers are also much more aware of even the most minor traffic infractions during the July 4th holiday. Many DUI arrests begin with a stop for a minor infraction.
   People who speed or drive too slowly might catch the eye of an officer looking to pull someone over. Even drivers who don't signal when turning or switching lanes may alert a police officer that intoxication could be a factor.
   Since many people tend to consume alcohol during this holiday, law enforcement is more sensitive than usual to any suspicious behavior. Therefore, more drivers may be pulled over for breathalyzer tests to help make sure the roads are safe for everyone.

Connect with an Alabama DUI Attorney Today, Call John W. Cowling


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Did a Memorial Day traffic stop leave you in hot water with the law?

baldwin county-DUI-Defense AttorneyIf you found yourself pulled over or at a click it or ticket check point, whether it is for DUI, Speeding, lack on insurance, or expired registration and find yourself in legal trouble. Start your defense by getting the right legal information. John W. Cowling is a defense attorney in Loxley, Baldwin County, Alabama. He will consult with you and go over all your options, then protect your rights in court. So If this Memorial Day Weekend didn't go as you had planned, and you got in trouble with the law, do yourself a favor and call the law office of John W. Cowling today 251-947-7667

As always, holiday weekends are a perfect time for police to increase their presence on the roadways. Do yourself a favor and take the extra time and make sure you are aware of any steps you can take to avoid unwanted police troubles while traveling this weekend. Before hitting the roadway, double check your plate and brake lights, locate and create quick access to your insurance, license and registration- keep your inspection stickers up to date (and license plates). Equipment violations are a great way to find yourself pulled over. Avoid giving the police a chance to legally stop you by making sure that your lights are working and any equipment issues have been addressed before heading out. As always have a safe and hassle-free weekend!

Trouble with the Law at the Hangout Festival in Gulf Shores?


It's easy to imagine that someone could get arrested in Gulf Shores this weekend. I was arrested in Gulf Shores at the Hang Out Music Fest, is a sentence you don't want to utter, yet it happens. Drug Possession and Public Intoxication laws that govern Gulf Shores and the State of Alabama can be harsh and expensive. Being arrested for DUI or Public Intoxication in Gulf Shores will not only ruin you're weekend Hangout plans, it can ruin lives.

Gulf Shores, Alabama, may seem like an weird place to have a music festival, but then again, there was probably a time when folks scoffed at the idea of doing one in Manchester, Tennessee, too ... and look how that turned out.

Like Bonnaroo, Hangout is fun and care-free; it may not have the famously dusty campgrounds, but it makes up for that in metric tons of white sand, beautiful Gulf breezes, and warm sun. Not to mention boardwalk bars, waterslides and Southern hospitality. It remains the only festival where going barefoot is not only possible, but practically encouraged. It's relaxed in all the right ways, a party in every possible sense of the term. Yes, Hangout is rather aptly named.

Although relaxed, the law is still the law, and if your weekend plans of going to Gulf Shores to hear some amazing music at the Hang Out Festival ends in back of a police car, then you're looking for help. John Cowling, Located in Loxley in Baldwin County, is a Criminal Defense Attorney that is willing and able to help you. If you're in trouble with the law, or been arrested for anything while attending the Hang Out Music Festival in Gulf Shores, John W Cowling is just a phone call away. Call him today 251-947-7667.

Mobile Bayfest 2012 Safety

bayfest logoHundreds of thousands of people will converge on downtown Mobile this weekend for BayFest. Ahead of the festivities the Mobile Police Department has released some safety tips for folks heading down to the concert.

· Attend the event with family or friends.
· Park in designated areas.
· Secure important belongings inside of vehicles and out of view.
· Parents should place an identity card in their child's pocket in the event they become separated from one another. The card should provide the name of the child, address, telephone contact numbers and the name of a relative.
· In the event that parents and children are separated, the children should be instructed to go to nearest police officer.
· Adults are encouraged to establish a post-event meeting place for family and friends in case you become separated.
· Wear light clothing, comfortable shoes, sunglasses, and sunscreen or a hat.
· Drink lots of fluids to stay hydrated.
· A city ordinance strictly forbids glass containers in public.
· No underage drinking is allowed. Uniformed and special undercover police details will arrest violators.
· If you need police assistance during the event, advise the nearest uniformed officer.
· Please cooperate with all requests from police officers.
· Uniformed and plainclothes officers will be patrolling designated areas of the crowds to identify and arrest persons engaging in criminal activity.
· Pets are prohibited during Bay Fest, except for special assistance animals.
· Skateboards and motorized scooters are prohibited.

If you or a love one has a run-in with the law, give John W. Cowling a call for a free consultation. 251-947-7667 or  251-4327667

The Mounting Trouble with the BP Settlement

Gulf-Oil-Spill-SettlementA New Orleans federal judge will receive an update Friday on the mountain of litigation surrounding the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, amid a surge of complaints about a proposed class-action settlement of some of the lawsuits.

In the days leading up to the Friday status conference with U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier, the attorneys general of Louisiana and Mississippi, among others, have filed court documents objecting to various aspects of the deal.

They want Barbier to rule on their objections before a hearing scheduled to begin Nov. 8 on the fairness of the proposed settlement between British oil company BP and a steering committee representing thousands of individuals and businesses harmed in the oil spill that followed the blowout of BP's Macondo well.

The settlement establishes a court-supervised center for collecting and evaluating the claims and proposing payouts using complex formulas based on such factors as where claimants lived and the damages they suffered.

The blowout led to an explosion that killed 11 men aboard the Deep-water Horizon drilling rig, but the settlement does not cover injury or wrongful death claims related to the rig disaster. It also doesn't settle civil and possible criminal action by governments, suits among various companies over culpability for the accident, or claims against companies other than BP.

Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood has asked the court to examine an earlier process BP set up, the Gulf Coast Claims Facility. His motion refers to "illegal and illegally obtained" quick-claims through which some plaintiffs received offers of cash settlements in exchange for releasing defendants from further claims.

Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell has raised objections to the settlement's calculations for compensation to people in the seafood industry, and its assessment of economic and environmental damage to the Gulf Coast.

Groups representing seafood workers question a cap on their potential compensation.

While Barbier is not expected to make rulings at the status meeting, it will give him a chance to consider what further information he will need for the November hearing.

"The parties proposed a solution, and he found it reasonable. Now the judge is in the position of receiving evidence to determine whether it is actually working," said Chris Dean, a Houston attorney for several spill plaintiffs.

BP has said it believes the settlement is working as intended when it was agreed upon by the company and the Plaintiffs' Steering Committee.

"As anticipated in the schedule set by the court, and as is common in any class-action settlement approval process, some class members have filed objections to the settlement," said Scott Dean, a BP spokesman.

"BP's and the PSC's responses to these objections are due Oct. 22, 2012. As we have said repeatedly, BP and the PSC believe that the settlement agreements, which received preliminary approval by the Court on May 2, 2012, are fair, reasonable and adequate under the law."

Plaintiffs' Steering Committee representatives were unavailable for comment.

After Barbier tentatively approved the deal in May, the Deepwater Horizon Claims Center began accepting claims. But that process has moved slowly.

Last week, the claims center said that it has made 38 settlement offers in response to more than 25,000 economic claims from businesses and individuals, and has made no payments.

Plaintiffs' lawyers, government officials and claimants themselves have complained that without offers, claimants have no basis for deciding ahead of a Nov. 1 deadline whether to opt out of the settlement and pursue their own litigation.

"The problem with this settlement is that claimants won't know what they are getting until the settlement is complete," said Brent Coon, a Beaumont attorney representing about 15,000 spill clients. "When that number finally pops up, they will have already waived their right to complain."